My name is DeLayne Andrews. My 18 year old daughter, Meghan Andrews is having her third brain surgery that is scheduled August 10, 2017 at 11:30am. I have sat in front of this blank screen for a long time not knowing where to begin or even how to create this story. I have been on my own since I was 17 years old and asking for help is very much out of my comfort zone. Being that this is her third surgery in two years, my family has not been able to recover financially and we are facing an overwhelming amount of debt that I have no idea how to keep my family above water. I have had to take off work a lot in the last two years and I am in debt with even my paid time off. Meghan was diagnosed in May of 2015. She was 16 at the time and had not started her period or gone into puberty, was having vision problems and lactating breasts. Her pediatrician ordered a prolactin test that came back around 3200. A normal Prolactin level is below 50. Her pediatrician ordered an MRI and that showed that she had a Macroprolactinoma, a benign tumor, that was pushing against her optic nerve. This is extremely rare in children. Meghan was born with a lazy eye and had corrective surgery that failed and she has been legally blind in her left eye since she was 5. The tumor sits on her right eye so the doctors wanted to do everything possible to protect her vision in her only good eye. Meghan began taking a medication called Cabergoline to reduce the tumor in size but she bacame resistent to it. She had her first surgery in September of 2015. We thought that would be it and she would be a normal teenager finally. Unfortunatley, the surgeon was not able to get all of the tumor due to too much risk of vision loss. They thought that the Cabergoline would take care of the rest. Meghan became resistent to the medication again so her Prolactin levels began to rise once more. Although the tumor was much smaller, the residual tumor was preventing her body to wake up on its own. We had to go back to surgery again in March of 2017. We were told that they would get what they could surgically and then she would have to do radiation to take care of the rest. After waiting for 6 weeks to hear from her Neuro Surgeon to get the referral to Oncology, he finally told us that radiation would not be possible because it would cause her to go completely blind and that he felt that Meghan would need to be turned over to an adult team of surgeons to do yet another surgery. We met with her adult Neuro Surgeon on Monday 7/3/2017, and he comfirmed that surgery is our only option. Without surgery, Meghan will go blind over time and even with surgery, there is a 50% chance of blindness.
My daughter is an artist by nature and is a very visual person so something like this has been hard for our family to digest. No matter what happens, we will get through this together. We have so much love and support around us, with friends and family, everyone has been praying so hard for Meghan. Through all of this stress, she has maintained graduating from High School with A and B honor roll. She has kept a postitive attitude, has been the best big sister, daughter and friend that anyone could ask for. Even through the realization and how frightening this is for a young woman to go through she still remains to even be my rock when I need a shoulder to cry on. So with saying all of this, I am in desperate need of help. Whether it is money, guidance, prayers, or anything you can think of that will help my beautiful family get through this for a third time. I could never tell anyone how truly thankful and grateful we would be. She is the strongest person I have ever known for such a young heart and she deserves the world. I am doing everything in my power as a mother to give that to her in this tough time. Even if it means asking for help.
Thank you in advance for all of your support and love.
Surgery September 2015
Surgery March 2017
Christmas Homeless Project 2016